You may have seen the term cognitive behavioural therapy or CBT and wondered what it is and if it could be helpful for you. CBT is an evidence based form of therapy that has been proven to be as effective as medication in treating a host of mental health issues. In some cases, CBT has even been proven to be more effective than medication alone. For a more detailed explanation of CBT you can check this out, but this article will explain how CBT is effective in treating 4 key mental health issues and improving your relationships. As you read, keep in mind that it is always important to speak with a professional to find out if CBT will be the right treatment for you. TranQool is a simple way to speak with CBT trained therapist who can help you determine the right treatment plan for you!
There are many different types of depression and it can vary in severity. If you are depressed you may experience depressed or irritable mood for most of the day, nearly every day. You may also notice decreased interest in activities you used to enjoy, or a general fatigue, which makes it difficult to participate in activities. Physical symptoms such as change in weight or sleeping patterns are also common. For a full list of the symptoms of depression you can refer to the DSM-5 for depression. CBT has been proven to be effective in treating depression because it focuses on changing negative thought patterns and goal setting. Many people who are depressed feel trapped in a cycle of negative thoughts that result in negative behaviours. CBT can help to break this cycle by identifying those negative thoughts and addressing them before they can result in negative behaviours. Through repetition of this process you are able to identify the causes of these negative thoughts and develop skills to address your triggers. As you progress through the CBT program and develop new skills, you will begin setting goals. Through this process CBT allows you to get back to feeling like yourself and will help you achieve your goals!
Anxiety disorders are the result of internal factors whether brain chemistry or conditioning. Anxiety is an ongoing condition that is present regardless of external factors in contrast to stress which is a reaction to a high pressure or threatening situation. If you have generalized anxiety disorder you will notice that you are on edge or restless most of the time. You may also notice fatigue, trouble falling asleep, or increased irritability. You may also experience some physical symptoms of anxiety such as sweating or nausea. For a full list of the symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder you can refer to the DSM-5 for generalized anxiety disorder. CBT is proven to be highly effective in treating anxiety. As mentioned before, CBT focuses on breaking negative thought cycles. If you suffer from anxiety you likely have one or more of the 12 negative thought biases. These include having a mental filter that focuses on the negatives of a situation while ignoring the positive aspects. CBT can help you identify these biases and work to correct them so you can fairly evaluate situations. Additionally, CBT can help you set goals for the future and avoid overanalyzing or thinking negatively about the future.
Insomnia is defined as trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. It results in low energy and can impact your behaviour and mood. You may also experience insomnia if you have an anxiety disorder or depression. For the full list of symptoms of insomnia you can refer to the DSM-5 for insomnia. If you have insomnia you will generally be dissatisfied with your sleep quantity or quality. Therapists who specialize in CBT-I, a form of CBT specific to insomnia, can help people people discover and treat the underlying cause of their insomnia ie. depression or anxiety or by treat the insomnia itself if there is no other mental health issue. Recently there have been new studies on CBT for insomnia and it is now considered the preferred treatment.
Eating disorders are characterized by irregular eating habits and severe concern about body weight or shape. The most common eating disorders include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. While eating disorders involve a preoccupation with body image eating disorders are often the result of a desire for control. For a full list of each of the eating disorders, you can refer to the DSM-5 for eating disorders. Eating disorders and generally caused by poor self image coupled with a need for control. Both of these issues are connected to negative thought patterns that have been learned over time. CBT can help you to break these negative thought patterns and will support the development of healthy self-image. It can also help you to not view food as a means of control.
When you seek therapy for your relationships, you benefit all the relationships in your life. Couples counselling can help with the many challenges that can face a marriage or relationship but can also help you develop the skills to improve your other relationships. Counselling for couples can help with major life transitions, trust issues, infidelity, poor communication, and trauma. Since CBT focuses on developing awareness of negative thinking, it is helpful for resolving trust issues in relationships. It also focuses on improving your communication skills so that when issues do arise you can manage them better. CBT is also helpful for whole family counselling or be used by an individual to improve their relationships with co-workers, friends, and family.